Victoria Rodríguez Ceja was ratified this Thursday by the Senate of the Republic as a new member of the Governing Board of Banco de México (Banxico), with which she will begin her new position in the institution as of January 1, 2022.
With 78 votes in favor, 21 against and 10 abstentions, the official will become the following year the third woman that the Banxico Governing Board agrees, together with the deputy governors Irene Espinosa and Galia Borja, the latter with whom he has already worked in public administration.
Likewise, she will be accompanied by Deputy Governors Jonathan Heath and Gerardo Esquivel, with whom she has also collaborated. And she will become the fourth member of the Board to be proposed by Andrés Manuel López Obrador.
Although Rodríguez Ceja was ratified only as a member of the Governing Board of the monetary institute, everything indicates that he will come to replace Alejandro Díaz de León as governor of the central bank. When President Andrés Manuel López Obrador proposed her, he said that he would become the first woman to lead the institution.
During the discussion of its ratification, in the plenary session of the Upper House, the criticisms focused on the fact that although she is an official with studies, with knowledge in economic matters such as public finances, she does not meet the requirements not only to reach the Board of Government, but to be governor of the central bank.
“We are washing our hands when we say that the Senate only approves members, but this House can also stand up as a defender of legality and, knowing what the President intends, be explicit that it does not meet the requirements to be governor, “said the PAN senator Gustavo Madero.
Despite criticism, parties like Morena and even the PRD set their position in favor of Rodríguez Ceja, considering that his career was adequate to occupy the position.
“Rodríguez Ceja, meets the requirements established in the law and is suitable to be a member of the Banxico Governing Board, she will be the third woman to be a member of this important autonomous body. This decision should honor us all, since it is about empowering women in spaces that were previously only occupied by men; We do not doubt the capacity of Victoria Rodríguez Ceja, who has been the victim of an unnecessary political lynching by the opposition, ”said Morena Senator Lucía Meza.
Without fixing posture
During his appearance in committees, a day prior to its ratification by the plenary session, Rodríguez Ceja assured legislators that he will preserve the autonomy of the central bank, in addition to seeking to meet the objective of maintaining stability in purchasing power.
The official, who was announced after it was announced that the President withdrew the proposal of Arturo Herrera, former Secretary of the Treasury, as a new member of the Board, declared that, as established by law, international reserves can only be be invested in first-rate foreign currency securities to reduce the impact of volatility.
Rodríguez Ceja’s name seemed foreign to Banxico. When it was announced by President López Obrador, uncertainty was generated in the markets, waiting to know the official’s position on monetary policy.
In this sense, Janneth Quiroz, director of Economic Analysis at Monex, said that what Victoria Rodríguez said in her appearance was what was expected of any member of Banxico, and does not dissipate the uncertainty about her monetary policy stance.
Markets continue to evaluate
“The markets have been evaluating what this change implies and we still don’t know. There is some fear due to the interference that the President could have in Banxico due to his closeness to the official. They want to know what bias it will have in matters of monetary policy and she has not said about what decision Banxico should be taking, “he said.
Meanwhile Luis Pérez Lezama, director of Economic Research at Saver ThinkLab, asserted that there is a certain “forced optimism” in the Mexican financial system, while there is a risk of a weakening of Banxico since the proximity of Rodríguez Ceja with López Obrador could provoke that monetary policy be sacrificed to comply with the social policy that the government has promised.
“The movement is forced, it does not have an ideal reception, optimal for the markets and that at the international level leaves many doubts,” he said.
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